MLC is delighted to be participating once again in Open House Melbourne. Fitchett Chapel, MLC's Tuscan-inspired church, will open its doors to the public on the 29th of July this year.
Commissioned by the former Principal Rev Dr Wood, the chapel was built in 1959 by Frederick Clarence Armstrong OAM (1914-2008) as a memorial to the school's founding Principal, Rev Dr WH Fitchett. Armstrong was renowned for designing a number of Victorian hospitals and churches, counting the Epworth Hospital chapel among his many works.
The chapel sits at the entrance to the school, its bell tower creating a distinctive silhouette that replicates rustic Italian churches, with the pale brickwork and terracotta gable roof of the building complementing the Tuscan-themed architecture.
Inside, traditional religious elements decorate the light-filled chapel, with a beautiful stained glass window above the altar and an Italian oak-carved image of the Last Supper drawing the eye. Twenty leadlight windows feature an array of inspiring women, including Tonga's Queen Salote (who visited the College in the 1950s), Elizabeth Fry (pioneering prison reformer) and other noteworthy MLC community members, celebrating a diverse range of women for their achievements and their contribution to Christianity.
A recent addition to the chapel was the stunning sculptural glasswork created for the entrance doors by David Wright, one of the world's leading glass artists whose work has been exhibited internationall and is also currently held in the National Gallery of Australia and the National Gallery of Victoria.
"It's a privilege to once again be a part of such an event as Open House Melbourne," says Maria Mercuri, MLC's Advancement Department Manager. "We enjoyed a fantastic response last year when MLC opened its doors to The Residence in MLC's original tower building built in 1882, and this is another great opportunity to see inside a building not usually open to the public. We are looking forward to what will be a wonderful weekend."
Such striking features, both interior and exterior, along with its City of Boroondara Heritage Overlay, make Fitchett Chapel a place of cultural and architectural significance and an absolute must-see for Open House Melbourne.